Women, Science and Nature: Arts and Letters Report April 2015

By Jennifer Ann DAVIES

NCWQ Arts and Letters Adviser

Czech - Poloand mountains called Beskydy

…No writer can reproduce the actual TEXTURE of living life…

E.L. Doctorow 

…Many, however, continue to weave informative, connecting threads…



Scientists, Researchers and Writers are enhancing widespread knowledge of, and responses to, a range of interesting environmental issues, via printed and digitised media.

Madagascar! Habitat destruction and fragmentation caused by illegal slash-and-burn farming, logging of rosewood and ebony trees and mining, are major threats to Lemurs, as is bush-meat hunting by impoverished local people…..p.12 Wellbeing: Issue 12. www.wellbeing.com.au

Birds Benefit Beans? Recent studies show that “…trees planted in between coffee crops can support wild birds…”

Shade means less coffee is produced, but also, less is lost to pests, like the coffee-borer, which is eaten by the birds! – Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Amboseli National Park – Kenya! Elephants can determine ethnicity, gender and age of human voices!! – Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.


VISUAL ARTIST: Tess GOULD – tesskerin@hotmail.com

ART FOR ART’S SAKE…….The inspiration for ‘Morning Bliss’ came from a morning drive around Montville, on the Sunshine Coast.

Winter – peaceful – beautiful –

“…As with a lot of artists, art came later in my life. I am moved when I discover a place and see its beauty – I desire to share the magic of the moment…” Tess Gould: p.22:Wellbeing:Issue 151)


…and a return to LETTERS! 

Jackie FRENCH!!


“…In the mists of sleep-deprived young motherhood, I found a copy of ‘Wellbeing’, read it and thought: ‘Would they like an article?’

I was broke, a single mother living with a baby in a shed in the bush, cooking locally…..

No fairy waving her wand….”!!!

Today one can read – Jackie FRENCH – Columnist 20 years!!!

….joining – Kerry Boyne, Sub-editor and Managing Editor – 2000 to present


“Writing is perhaps

the greatest of human

inventions, binding together

people, citizens of distant

epochs, who never knew

one another…..proof

that humans can work



Donna Duggan, Receptionist, Editorial Co-ordinator and Production Editor 1992 – 2005

Liani Solari, Sub-Editor – Editor 1999 – 2006

Chelsea Hunter, Co-Editor – 2006-2012 …delightfully, Chelsea’s own philosophy has been to encourage readers to be in the present moment…and in so doing, find what brings them contentment and peace!

Danielle Kirk – Deputy Editor – 2012 to present…promoting a sustainable, holistic, natural way of life as being desirable and achievable!

Christine Broadbent – Columnist – 1985 to present

Karin Cutter – Columnist – 1985 to present

Jackie French – Columnist – (putting her into the list contextually!) – “…there was never a sudden change, no fairy waving her want…”!!

Dr. Michael Elstein – Columnist – 1998 to present

Carla Oates – Columnist – 2002 to present – “…the magazine continues to be highly regarded for its integrity. Its culture reflects what it espouses…”


I had found this publication interesting for a number of reasons – but, perhaps, particularly so, in light of recent budget cuts in arts and letters – public critique of Oz publications vs. those obtainable from overseas and in light of some of the socio-economic and socio-political concerns expressed by our National Adviser, Eva…….

Whilst not necessarily everyone’s cup of tea, Wellbeing has survived!

To have done so, the group of people working to produce this magazine, had to have both generated and followed GOOD LEADERS!!

Some insights produced by Australia’s Peter Cosgrove in 2013, have been used recently, to endeavour to promote GOOD LEADERSHIP – critical in every work arena, and also contested via media, because of bullying, harassment acceleration, dishonesty and an absence of integrity in some institutions and workplaces – with a particular emphasis for schools!!

Like Grisanti’s tender yet stark message: “…Life IS infinitely precious..” calling to us to become authentically politically literate, thereby rejecting soppy, dishonest nonsense, that still poses as contemporary political ‘intelligence’ – Cosgrove also states the case for GOOD leadership, in concise, non-sentimental, stark terms and language, that is unmistakable in its message – and warning…….


Gen. Peter Cosgrove AC: Cairns 2013 (original address) – ACPPA website or www.acppa.catholic.edu.au


Leaders ‘lead upwards’! – They create, shape, direct, and inspire sensible decisions….

Whether or not a group (or team) is statutory, institutional, industrial, social or traditional….a CHIEF leads the group members…

A leader provides MOTIVATION! However, the first thing a good leader looks for is INTEGRITY! – Integrity, Honesty, Trustworthiness…

Lack of these traits, broadly called MORALITY, can be unapparent, or disguised, but the disguise will ultimately reveal itself and display a particular leader’s Dishonesty and/or Immorality!

HUMANITY and DECENCY have an intricate relationship with Morality, and engender a “…deep seated moral courage…”, which is the foundation to any other form of bravery or fortitude!!

COMPASSION is a must!! “…You have to feel every ounce of loss and grieve for every moment of suffering that your decisions bring….Show me a dispassionate, uncaring leader, and I’ll show you somebody who won’t be a leader for long, because the confidence of group members….of subordinates and superiors…will NOT endure…”

HUMILITY is the final essential ingredient. Humility is not the enemy of self-confidence or self-assurance!

Responsible, communicative LEADERS generate loyalty, essential in any group or organisation! Loyalty, though, is not intrinsic in the leader or the led – it is relational, and cannot exist in isolation……..


Onward we travel

Hoping to reveal the patterns

That underlie appearances

Removing the blindspot

That covers the centre

Of insight and recognition….


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